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The Best American Mystery Stories 2010
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The Best American Mystery Stories 2010

4.6 3
by Lee Child (Editor), Otto Penzler (Editor)
 

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Best-selling novelist Lee Child edits this latest collection of the genre's finest from the past year. Featuring "gritty tales told with panache," this is a "must-read for anybody who cares about crime stories" ("Booklist").

Overview

Best-selling novelist Lee Child edits this latest collection of the genre's finest from the past year. Featuring "gritty tales told with panache," this is a "must-read for anybody who cares about crime stories" ("Booklist").

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
The 20 short stories in the 14th edition of this "best of" series offer a wider variety than some of its predecessors. Sherlockians who have not yet encountered Lyndsay Faye will be more than pleased by her pastiche, "The Case of Colonel Warburton's Madness," which allows the sleuth to solve the mystery from an armchair. Jay Brandon makes clever use of his research into the history of San Antonio in "A Jury of His Peers," which centers on the Mexican Army's expulsion of all of the city's attorneys in 1842. Lynda Leidiger's "Tell Me" movingly portrays the horrific aftermath of a rape and attempted murder. Doug Alleyn's "An Early Christmas" proves that excellent traditional whodunits, which have been underrepresented in recent years, are still being written. Other contributors include Dennis Lehane, Phillip Margolin, and Jon Land. While this volume contains relatively few household names, the quality certainly doesn't suffer as a result. (Oct.)
From the Publisher
"This collection is sure to please mystery fans as well as those who enjoy short stories"—Library Journal
"The 20 short stories in the 14th edition of this “best of” series offer a wider variety than some of its predecessors...While this volume contains relatively few household names, the quality certainly doesn’t suffer as a result."—Publishers Weekly, STARRED review 
"Penzler’s foreword...in favor of an eclectic mix of tales that exhibit crime in all its varieties in every corner of the world—and then some."—Kirkus Reviews
Library Journal
Thriller author Child is the guest editor for this 14th installment in Otto Penzler's yearly compilation of the best American mystery stories. Published in calendar year 2009, the 20 selections encompass all aspects of mystery, not just the traditional whodunit crime stories, offer everything from Sherlock Holmes-style deduction to surprise endings, and range in tone from the gritty to the refined. The book is organized alphabetically by the author's last name, instead of any thematic or stylistic manner, so each story is radically different from the next. While some of the authors are well-known novelists, including the late Kurt Vonnegut and Gar Anthony Haywood, others are predominantly short story authors. But no matter their background, each has a unique voice for the genre. VERDICT This collection is sure to please mystery fans as well as those who enjoy short stories, but it will not be a good match for those seeking a traditional detective story. [Look for an interview with Penzler, plus his five future masters of noir, in the Sept. 16, 2010, edition of our BookSmack! enewsletter.—Ed.]—Elizabeth Nelson, UOP Lib., Des Plaines, IL
Kirkus Reviews

Guest editor Child chooses 20 atmospheric tales whose settings and crimes are all over the map in this 14th entry in Penzler's annual series.

Crime is everywhere. In teeming Campeche City on the Yucatán, a hit man catches up with a fugitive in Gary Alexander's "Charlie and the Pirates." In Jon Land's "Killing Time," another hitter hides in plain sight at a Connecticut boarding school. R.A. Allen's nomadic waiter, who could be named Robert, seeks sexual fulfillment on Florida's panhandle in "The Emerald Coast"; a Boston priest is accused of sexual misconduct in John Dufresne's "The Cross-Eyed Bear." Lyndsay Faye's Sherlock Holmes pastiche "The Case of Colonel Warburton's Madness" takes Dr. Watson to the home of a San Franciscan fixated on the phantom Mexicans, while Gar Anthony Haywood's "The First Rule Is" explores the relationship between Los Angeles's haves and have-nots. Back on the East Coast, Dennis Lehane unfolds the tender story of a man, a dog and a murder in "Animal Rescue." Moving from North Dakota to Jersey does little to improve a call girl's luck in Allan Tucher's "Bismarck Rules." Russian-born Zhenya, whose father makes sexual exploitation a thriving business in Joseph Wallace's "Custom Sets," criss-crosses the country from Philadelphia to Fort Worth, seeking justice. Crime persists even beyond the grave, as the late Kurt Vonnegut's "Ed Luby's Key Club" proves.

Penzler's foreword makes no bones about spurning traditional whodunits in favor of an eclectic mix of tales that exhibit crime in all its varieties in every corner of the world—and then some.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780547237466
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
10/05/2010
Series:
Best American Mystery Stories Series
Pages:
402
Sales rank:
927,930
Product dimensions:
5.40(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.10(d)

Meet the Author

OTTO PENZLER is a renowned mystery editor, publisher, columnist, and owner of New York's The Mysterious Bookshop, the oldest and largest bookstore solely dedicated to mystery fiction. He has edited more than fifty crime-fiction anthologies.

LEE CHILD is the author of thirteen Jack Reacher thrillers, including the New York Times bestsellers Persuader, The Enemy, One Shot, The Hard Way, and #1 bestsellers Bad Luck and Trouble and Nothing to Lose. All his titles have been optioned for major motion pictures.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
Birmingham, England
Date of Birth:
1954
Place of Birth:
Coventry, England
Education:
Sheffield University
Website:
http://www.leechild.com

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The Best American Mystery Stories 2010 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
FlushBarrettBrowning More than 1 year ago
'The Best American Mystery Stories 2010,' edited by Lee Child, contains an interesting mix. Twenty stories by authors as diverse as Dennis Lehane, Kurt Vonnegut, Doug Allyn, and Jay Brandon take varied and unexpected turns. Three, however, stand out. Jay Brandon's 'A Jury of His Peers,' based on a historical incident, recounts the return of lawyers, who had been kidnapped and held for ransom by Santa Ana's army, to San Antonio. When after a year or more away from their practices and loved ones, the lawyers return to reclaim what they left behind, it is no surprise that violence erupts. Phyllis Cohen's 'Designer Justice' also deals with the effects of violence; it depicts a violent crime and its unexpected aftermath. And 'Killing Time' by Jon Land introduces Mr. Beechum, middle school language arts teacher extraordinary, who is not only able to interest his charges in fiction, he is also able to protect them from the unforeseen. While no one reader will necessarily equally enjoy all the stories, there is enough variety to appeal to those who enjoy the genre. And the short story format is well suited to busy lifestyles. The bottom line: Five stars.
BookAddictFL More than 1 year ago
This is a great collection of short stories that should entertain any mystery fan. Within the mystery genre, this book offers a little bit from every subgenre, including suspense, police procedurals, espionage, and private detective. Not every story was a 5 star for me but that likely spoke more of personal preference than writing talent. This collection is a great way to discover new authors, many of whom also write full-length novels. Overall, I found the stories highly entertaining. ** I received this book as an early review copy from the publisher, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, through NetGalley.com. **
Anonymous More than 1 year ago